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Creating a Windows Process Dump File



This article explains how to create a dump file of a Windows process, which may help for technical support purposes.



In order to troubleshoot an unresponsive application it is often helpful to create a dump, i.e. a "snapshot" of the Windows process(es) associated to the application.

To create a dump file:

  • Start Task Manager by pressing Ctrl+Shift+Esc or right-clicking an empty area of the task bar and selecting Task Manager
  • In the Processes tab, right-click the name of the process and select Create dump file
  • In File Explorer, open the location displayed after the dump file has been created
  • Repeat the above if more processes are involved
  • Compress the file(s) to reduce the size of the transfer, e.g. right-click and select Send to/Compressed (zipped) folder

This procedure is suitable for creating a user-mode dump file. If creation of the dump file fails with an "Access denied" error, it may indicate that the process is busy running in kernel mode (e.g. code by a driver). If an application is unresponsive in this condition, a driver update may solve the issue.

Please note that the process dump may contain private information, if such data was in use by the process.


Article Information
Article ID: 14-139
Platform: Windows
Products: All
Additional Keywords: None
Last Update: 2014-03-13
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